A girl smiling with glasses and braces.
Staying healthy involves being aware of and giving attention to our physical health,
our mental health and our emotional health – looking after ourselves!

Why is it important to stay healthy?

It’s important we learn to take care of our own health, as this will help us to feel good and will help us to cope with life’s challenges in a positive way.

Staying healthy physically can help us to be healthy mentally and emotionally too.

What is physical health?

What is important for physical health?

What is mental and emotional health?

What is important for our mental and emotional health?


Being aware of our thoughts and feelings


Understanding and managing our thoughts and feelings

Tips for staying health physically, mentally and emotionally:

Eating healthy food

Eating healthy food helps us to look and feel healthier. It is important to learn what food and drinks are good for us. Not eating enough food, or eating too much unhealthy food, can affect how our body works and how we feel. For example, if we have too much sugar in our food and drinks, we can feel tired or have mood swings. If we do not drink enough water, we can get dehydrated. If you have any questions about the food you are eating, remember you have the right to information and to support from a trusted adult such as a parent, doctor or teacher.

Eating healthy food

Exercising can help us to stay healthy in our bodies and our minds by:

Types of exercise including: football; camogie; hurling; basketball; soccer; hockey; tennis; swimming; walking; running; dancing, yoga and lots of other activities besides.

It’s important to know that exercise and sport isn’t about being the best player on the team, but about finding something that we enjoy!

Buildling resilience

Buildling our resilience can help us to cope and stay strong when we experience difficult times in our lives. How?

Sometimes it can be hard to think straight and to identify our feelings. Talking to others can help us to understand our thoughts and feelings better.

We can find activities which we enjoy doing and which help us to feel good. These might include exercising or playing sport, listening to our favourite music, reading books, painting, drawing, or practicing breathing exercises and meditation. 

We can build our own ‘Personal Toolbox’ and include things which might help us to feel better when we are feeling sad. These things might include, for example, a book, a poem or a photograph of someone special or a special memory. You could also keep the Childline phone number (1800 66 66 66) in the box, or a name and phone number of a trusted adult you can talk to about how you feel. 

We can be kind to ourselves and acknowledge our strong points.

We can accept that change does happen and, with support, we can learn to cope with change in a positive way. 

Other supports available include:​

Eating foods that are good for us, drinking healthy drinks and doing regular exercise can all help to keep us healthy physically, mentally and emotionally. If we are unhealthy, we will find it easier to cope with change and stress in our lives in a positive way. We will also be less likely to get sick. 

Most people will face difficulties or challenges with their physical, mental and emotional health at some time in their lives. It is important to know that we all have a right to ask for support. 

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